Chairman’s Report September 18, 2014

Congressional Post Card Program an Amazing Success 

Thousands of people contact CongressThe last week of August the Religious Freedom Coalition mailed three post cards to about 30,000 people asking them to sign and send them to their congressman and both Senators. The post cards demanded that Congress stop all funding and transfer of weapons to “rebels” attempting to overthrow the secular government of Syria. These “rebels” are killing Christian men, even beheading young Christian boys and taking Christian women and girls into sex slavery. There are NO “moderate” rebels. From the start of the Syrian war three years ago it was, and still is, a Sunni Muslim uprising sponsored by Sunni Saudi Arabia against a secular leaning Shiite government. 

The program to stop funding Muslim “rebels” has been such an amazing success. One congressman I contacted had received 85

Christians are facing extinction in Iraq from Islamic State terrorists.

Christians are facing extinction in Iraq from Islamic State terrorists.

of the 110 cards that were mailed into his district. This has great effect. A congressman considers four letters on the same subject from his constituents a “groundswell.” The sad truth is that very few constituents contact their congressmen and Senators. The success of the Tea Party has been based on getting people actually involved with congressmen and Senators, yet surveys show that less than 10% of Tea Party members actually do contact their elected representatives!  Even a small percentage has an impact. 

The Religious Freedom Coalition does not have the funding to mail huge numbers of the post cards, but I have authorized the production of 70,000 more sets. The process is a bit expensive because each card is customized. An individual’s or couple’s name and address are printed on each card. The cards are then addressed to that person’s specific congressman and two Senators. But, that makes it work. In the past when we sent copies of letters or cards and people had to fill out the names of congressmen and Senators themselves, only about 5% were ever mailed. We are at 85% or better as best I can tell! 

There are 435 congressmen so an average of about 100 cards per congressman were printed. We need to get a lot more cards than that delivered to stop President Obama from sending even more money to the “moderate” Sunni rebels who are targeting Christian schools in Damascus with mortars. Because there are only 100 Senators, we have been able to mail about 300 cards on average per Senator, more in more populated states, fewer in those less populated. Every indication is that over 85% of the cards we have mailed are being delivered. But that is still not enough, as again Obama has called for more money for “rebels.” 

(This program is not available online at this time. It is only available to USPS mail supporters. To be included please use contact-us to send your name and street address.) 

Please support my efforts to continue to distribute these post cards, as they are a cost effective way to let Congress know that most Americans don’t want tax dollars given to Islamic fighters regardless of who they are fighting. There is no good outcome – just look at Libya as an example! Libya was quite stable until Obama “fixed” it so that it is now a jihadist wonderland. 

Saudi Arabia helps fight ISIL by torturing Christians: With some really big fanfare, Secretary of State John Kerry announced that the Saudi government was going to join the fight against ISIL. What does that mean exactly? Will they send some of their F-15s or new Eurofighter Typhoons to bomb ISIL? NO. Will they send in ground forces? NO. Will they send weapons to the Iraqi government to fight ISIL? NO.  

Smiles then, but none now

King Abdullah and President Obama.

By “joining the fight,” John Kerry meant that the Saudi King would give his verbal permission for the United States to spend American treasure and American blood fighting ISIL for him. True to Kerry’s word, King Abdullah sort of offered help. Actually, he announced that the ISIL fighters were not true to Islam and gave his permission to other Muslims to fight them if they so desired. His army and air force will do nothing. In the past, just as the United States did, King Abdullah supported the ISIL efforts to oust President Assad of Syria. But ISIL has now become a threat to the Kingdom, since it has declared itself a superior Caliphate.  

Having made a statement denouncing the Sunni terrorist army, ISIL, the Sunni King Abdullah had to prove he was still true to Islam himself, so he ordered a massive round up of Christian foreign workers who had committed the grievous sin of praying in Jesus’ name on sacred Sunni Saudi soil. As usual, the round up was conducted by the dreaded religious police (Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice, or Haia).  

The Haia normally begin the torture of “suspects” on the way to the car that will carry the victims to jail. A favorite form of torture to perpetrate on Christians is to whip the bottoms of the feet until they bleed. The children of foreign workers, regardless of age, are arrested with the parents and face the same fate. 

At least 28 Christians were rounded up September 3rd in a raid on the home of an Indian national in the eastern Saudi city of Khafji. Their current situation is unknown as there is no access to them. Under the Saudi “justice system” that the United States supports, there is no right to an attorney or even for individuals to call someone to let them know they have been arrested. A year ago 53 Ethiopian Christians were arrested and there was no news of them ever again despite efforts of the Religious Freedom Coalition to learn of their status through a U.S.  congressman. The Saudi Embassy simply did not answer the congressman’s letter.   

“I hope our government will speak up,” said Congressman Frank Wolf about the most recent arrests. He added that the anti-Christian raids were not surprising given that the Saudi regime “did not want our soldiers to wear crosses during the Desert Storm” operation in 1991. 

There are over two million Christian guest workers in Saudi Arabia and they are forbidden to own Bibles, hold Bible studies or pray together. It is not just poor Asian and African Christian workers that are victims. On September 1st a British man was beaten by the religious police because he spoke to a Muslim female cashier at a high end mall. The Haia officers told the man that only his wife could speak to a Muslim woman. When the man’s wife intervened on his behalf, she was beaten as well. 

The Saudi’s of course are allies of the United States. Our government sells them sophisticated military hardware and police equipment including high tech surveillance equipment to fight “terror” and/or political enemies of the state. Presumably the whips used for torture and the large swords used for beheadings are made in Saudi Arabia or some other Arab nation.

A little background: Even before the first church bombing took place in Iraq I knew there was a serious problem with the American attempt to install Jeffersonian democracy in nations that were majority Islamic. I saw, as did a few others, the worrisome outcome in Afghanistan when the mujahedeen backed by the United States in the 1980’s forced the withdrawal of the Soviet Union, and an Islamic republic was formed there. The radical Islamic Taliban government of Afghanistan killed the last few Christians living there and then supported the 9-11 jihad attack on the United States. 

Earlier, in the 1970’s, President Jimmy Carter had pulled the rug out from under the Shah of Iran and helped to install the current government run by the radical Islamic Mullahs there. Just as Ronald Reagan did in Afghanistan and George W. Bush did in Iraq, it was President Jimmy Carter that in the name of “democracy” installed a government in Iran that represses religious freedom and human rights in general. In the middle of this muddle President Bill Clinton bombed Christian Serbia into the dark ages in order to establish an Islamic government in Kosovo. Now Barack Obama is finishing off the last few secular governments in the Middle East including Libya, Tunisia and Syria. Obama also helped install the Muslim Brotherhood into power in Egypt but the people there revolted and ousted that Islamist group.  

In Iraq within a few months of the 2003 American led invasion to bring “democracy,” Christians were fleeing villages their families had lived in for nearly 2,000 years. Then came the church bombings and a flood of refugees into Egypt, Jordan and Syria. Europe and the United States made a point of accepting many more Muslim Iraqi refugees than Christians. The vast majority of Iraqi Christian refugees slowly migrated to the safety of Syria. Now the civil war planned and financed by Saudi Arabia’s extreme Wahhabi royals is forcing Christians to flee the place the first church was founded outside of Jerusalem. 

One of many bombed out churches in the Middle East

A bombed out church in Iraq. Christians are being driven to extinction.

The Islamic State or ISIL operated in Iraq under the Al-Qaeda banner since 2003, but after its success in Syria with the support of the United States and Saudi Arabia it was able to build up to the point of taking large amounts of territory in Iraq. It is the Iraq advance by ISIL that has caused the United States and the Saudis to not only stop the support of the group, but to turn against it. President Obama wants to continue to arm other Saudi supported “rebels” in Syria. 

The Religious Freedom Coalition is not a relief organization although as a 501c3 we are able to work with some local Christian groups in the Middle East to make the lives of Christian refugees better. I could not bring myself to work with large relief organizations or accept any government offered assistance because we would be forced to give the vast majority of supplies to Muslims. The Religious Freedom Coalition was offered a grant by USAID for work we were doing in Jordan, but I would have had to sign a statement saying that we would distribute aid based on population demographics. In plain English that meant over 95% would go to the Muslims who were persecuting the Christians. I just said no. 

Without grants from governments or large foundations which also required me to sign similar statements, what could be done in the Middle East to help Christians? We decided to  carefully pick projects where smaller amounts of money can have real impact on the lives of Christians, such as the Christmas for Refugees program. We also continue to supply bulk medical supplies to a free clinic operated by a church in Amman, Jordan as an ongoing project. We can’t help everyone, but we can change the lives of many persecuted Christians for the better as we do with our Christmas programs and in assisting other organizations in the delivery of large sea-going containers of food and other necessities. 

The Moscow Mission – Final Report I have just returned from a weeklong trip to Moscow where I attended two difference conferences with differ aims. One of the conferences was designed to strengthen traditional family values and was attended by people from 34 nations. The second conference was an attempt at reestablishing a committee of reconciliation between Russia and the United States that was first begun in 1989 by a group that included legendary conservative Paul Weyrich. 

My purpose in attending both conference was to introduce the issue of the persecution of Christians in the Middle East and the need for Russia in particular and other European nations to accept Iraqi and Syrian Christian refugees. I had some positive feedback and was able to speak to one official in the Russian Orthodox Church who seemed to agree with me and promised to take the matter up inside the church. Many of the Christians fleeing Iraq and Syria now are Orthodox, and that church needs to do more to help. 

 The church leader I spoke with informed me that Russia currently has an immigration problem second only to the United States. Yes – you read that right – Millions of people are trying to get into Russia legally and illegally. Illegal immigration, it turns out, is a major issue in Russia and the Russian people are particularly against immigration from the Islamic areas, which made my mission all the more difficult. I was surprised at this problem in that the official line from the White House about Russia is that “no one wants to live there.” I spoke to others in Russia on the problems of persecuted Christians in the Middle East, but I am not at liberty to reveal those discussions for the time being.           

The meeting to bring back the committee to normalize US-Russia relations was a disaster. Most of the participants, both American and Russian, were from the Cold War era and their solutions centered on “people to people” détente. The Russian and American people don’t have a problem or need “détente.” The problem is at the government level. As an example there are 4,000 Russian engineers working for Boeing Aircraft in Russia and more than 200,000 Americans work in Russia at various jobs. We have plenty of people to people exchange; the problem is between Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin, not the American or Russian people 

I presented to this group the reality that Russia and the United states face an existential threat from the rise in Islamic jihad and should cooperate in a common goal of fighting the threat of a spreading caliphate rather than fighting each other. I wanted an effort by this group and others to call attention to American and Russian leaders that the rise of the current caliphate, with the terror strikes against the two nations as proof that a common goal of self-defense exists. America and Russia should be on the same side in the Middle East. Instead, both sides are either selling or giving weapons to nations and groups that are bad actors. The United States is supporting Islamist fighters in Syria, and Russia is selling arms to Iran. 

One big positive on the trip was my ability to expose ministries and organizations from several other nations to our Christmas for Refugees program. There is promise that some groups from Europe will join with us to provide Christmas meals in 2016. 

William J. Murray, Chairman

Religious Freedom Coalition, 601 Pennsylvania Ave. NW #900, Washington, DC 20004-2601

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